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Not so many days ago I wrote a post about Google’s decision to shut down its RRS reader (Google Reader). And I have to return to this topic because I stumbled upon a post by Annalee Newitz “Magazines have finally killed blogs — but in a way you never expected” on i09 – a daily publication for people who want to escape the everyday.
It was nicely written as for people who are looking where to escape from Google Reader. But I read there some futuristic conclusions about new trends in online readership habits. I actually agree with the author that for general public RSS still means nothing; many people surf webpages like it is the one-dimentional Web 1.0 (and the internet means for them e-mail and Facebook only). For this segment of users RSS died without being even born!
At the same time, it is hard for me to agree with futuristic predictions of death of RSS in general. A lot of geeks, journalists, news sites, blogs and businessmen rely on this convenient “rich site summary” or “really simple syndication” of online content.
Thanks to blogging, each individual received what he/she missed before – an ultimate freedom to spread the message, to be heard and to influence on decision making.
It’s also hard to agree with Annalee Newitz phrase that “magazines killed blogs”. Balanced and tied by ethical journalistic rules traditional media do not love online popularity of opinionated and ungovernable blogs. Thanks to the blogging each individual received what he/she missed before – an ultimate freedom to spread the message, to be heard and to influence on decision making. And there’s no actual fight between blogs and traditional media! Because that mediums seek for monetization in the Web in different ways: bloggers are hoping for greater income from traffic and visits, and journalists are nurturing hope to receive money from online readers (to survive and in the digital era).
May be for someone Google’s decision to close its RSS reader looks like a trend, and a sign of bigger changes within the Web; that’s their right to think so. As for me, it is just another service which is disappearing and releasing place and market share for competitors’ substitutes. Let’s look around! There’re a lot of alternatives for gathering and reading RSS feeds on desktops/laptops, tablets and mobile devices.
Personally I by one click easily transferred my feeds from Google Reader to Feedly, and started enjoying its magazine-like design and advanced features. Among other alternatives is Newsblur. For those who have a Yahoo account, My Yahoo! offers RSS reading tool. For Mac, iPad, and iPhone users here is Reeder. Choice depends on you.